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Portrait of Heiner Linke; Photo: Kennet Ruona

Heiner Linke

Professor, Deputy dean (prorektor) at Faculty of Engineering, LTH

Portrait of Heiner Linke; Photo: Kennet Ruona

Optical-Beam-Induced Current in InAs/InP Nanowires for Hot-Carrier Photovoltaics


  • Jonatan Fast
  • Yen Po Liu
  • Yang Chen
  • Lars Samuelson
  • Adam M. Burke
  • Heiner Linke
  • Anders Mikkelsen

Summary, in English

Using the excess energy of charge carriers excited above the band edge (hot carriers) could pave the way for optoelectronic devices, such as photovoltaics exceeding the Shockley-Queisser limit or ultrafast photodetectors. Semiconducting nanowires show promise as a platform for hot-carrier extraction. Proof of principle photovoltaic devices have already been realized based on InAs nanowires, using epitaxially defined InP segments as energy filters that selectively transmit hot electrons. However, it is not yet fully understood how charge-carrier separation, relaxation, and recombination depend on device design and on the location of optical excitation. Here, we introduce the use of an optical-beam-induced current (OBIC) characterization method, employing a laser beam focused close to the diffraction limit and a high precision piezo stage, to study the optoelectric performance of the nanowire device as a function of the position of excitation. The photocurrent response agrees well with modeling based on hot-electron extraction across the InP segment via diffusion. We demonstrate that the device is capable of producing power and estimate the spatial region within which significant hot-electron extraction can take place to be on the order of 300 nm away from the barrier. When comparing to other experiments on similar nanowires, we find good qualitative agreement, confirming the interpretation of the device function, while the extracted diffusion length of hot electrons varies. Careful control of the excitation and device parameters will be important to reach the potentially high device performance theoretically available in these systems.


  • NanoLund: Center for Nanoscience
  • Solid State Physics
  • Synchrotron Radiation Research
  • Faculty of Engineering, LTH

Publishing year







ACS Applied Energy Materials





Document type

Journal article


The American Chemical Society (ACS)


  • Condensed Matter Physics


  • hot carrier
  • InAs
  • InP
  • nanowires
  • optical-beam-induced current
  • photovoltaic
  • scanning photocurrent microscopy




  • ISSN: 2574-0962